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MLAS defection: Vikramarka calls off indefinite fast

Press Trust of India  |  Hyderabad 

Senior Telangana Congress leader

M Bhatti Vikramarka Monday called off his three-day old indefinite fast, launched protesting the "illegal" merger of 12 party MLAs with the ruling TRS, following an appeal made by his party collegues.

Vikramarka, leader of the Congress legislature party, ended his fast at the state-run NIMS, where he was shifted by the police in view of his "failing health", State Congress president N Uttam Kumar Reddy told reporters here.

He said the Congress would step up its protest against the defection of its MLAs and would organise 'dharna' in front of District Collectorates on Tuesday.

He also said his party would seek an appointment with the President and MPs from the state, including him, would raise the issue in parliament.

"Doctors said his sugar levels have fallen to 69 and BP is fluctuating. Continuing the (fast) would pose a threat to his life. This fight would continue. All of us appealed to him and made him withdraw the fast by offering juice," Reddy said.

Vikramarka initially refused to take treatment, but relented after the party colleagues made an appeal to him to call off the fast in view of his "deterioating" health condition.

Earlier, police also said the action was taken as Vikramarka continued the protest beyond the permitted time.

The CLP leader had initially launched a 36-hour fast on Saturday, but later announced it would be an indefinite protest.

"He (Vikramarka) had obtained permission for holding a 36-hour dharna and it was granted. But, he continued to hold the protest even after the permitted time.

"After getting him checked by a medical team, he has been shifted", DCP (Central Zone) P Viswa Prasad told PTI.

In a dramatic turn of events, Telangana Assembly Speaker P Srinivas Reddy Thursday last recognised 12 MLAs of Congress as members of TRS, hours after they moved him seeking merger of their group with the ruling party.

The Speaker acceded to the request of the MLAs considering the fact that they constituted two-thirds of the Congress Legislature Party, a requirement for merger under the anti-defection law.

The Congress had won 19 seats in the assembly polls in December last year. But, 11 of them had announced (during the last few months) their decision to leave the party and join TRS.

As the Congress strength has come down to six, one less than that of AIMIM, it may lose the status of the main opposition party in the 119-member House.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, June 10 2019. 15:50 IST